What would happen if all the humans suddenly vanished?
As humans, unless the planet goes with us, we’re pretty unlikely to die out at exactly the same time. We’re just not coordinated enough for that.
But what would happen if every human vanished at the same time? How would the world cope without us? On a macro level, pretty well, if you believe the conclusions of the fascinating short video below.
Oh sure, things wouldn’t look too hot in the first few days, what with all the power plants shutting down (barring hydroelectric stations) and domesticated animals dying off without any human intervention. Things look even bleaker a month later, when the cooling water in nuclear power stations evaporates and the remaining feral animals see, uh, consequences of that.
But things will pick up eventually: cities will be covered in vegetation or sand, and metal structures will begin to collapse thanks to the corrosion of hundreds of years and no maintenance. In just 10,000 short years, it’ll be like we never existed, barring a few stone constructions – and any civilisation that grows up to replace us might be blissfully unaware of how we handled the planet when we were its tenants.
Is that reassuring or saddening? I’m not too sure, myself. One thing is for sure though: the planet can cope a lot better without us than we could without the planet.